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Global Accessibility Awareness Day 2024

Letters GAAD inside an unclosed circle with a keyboard at it's openingGlobal Accessibility Awareness Day is marked annually on the third Thursday of May. It’s a day that is near and dear to our mission, as it focuses on digital access and inclusion for those who live with disabilities or impairments. Creating accessible digital materials is crucial for inclusivity, especially for those with disabilities.

Here are five effective ways to help enhance digital content: 

1.  Alternative Text:

Alt text is a description of an image, used to help people with screen readers understand the content and context of an image.

Add alt text to photos through Instagram and Facebook, or other digital documents like Microsoft Office and emails. When writing alt text, be sure to include names, gender, and a detailed description of the setting.  

2.  Descriptive Hyperlinks:

A hyperlink is a clickable link that takes you to another location or file on the internet.

Ensure your hyperlinks are descriptive; instead of “click here”, use “read more about our accessibility guidelines”. This provides clearer context for all users, especially those using screen readers. 

3.  Case Sensitive:

Screen readers are case sensitive, which means that they pronounce uppercase and lowercase letters differently, such as “a” and “A”. Screen readers use variations in tone and inflection to indicate the presence of capitalized letters.

Be conscious of when you use capital letters. Keep this in mind when writing acronyms, emphasizing words, hashtags, subject lines, titles, and more.  

Hashtag Example:  

4.  Ensure Text Readability:

Readability is the ease with which a reader can understand and process text.

Make sure to label large blocks of text with headings, bullet points, and ample spacing to aid readability and navigation. This will enhance accessibility by ensuring information is chronological, thus easily comprehensible. 

5.  Spread Accessibility Awareness:

Spreading awareness about digital accessibility is key to creating an inclusive online environment. 

To promote digital accessibility, educate yourself about accessibility challenges, share your insights, and advocate for inclusive practices both at work and online. Take the information given to you today and be a role model by practicing inclusivity in all your digital interactions. Your proactive efforts can inspire others and help make the digital world accessible for everyone.  

These actions are simple yet impactful, and anyone can implement them to contribute to more accessible digital environments. 

Test out your knowledge to see how much you know about digital accessibility.

Learn More About Accessibility